A Race For October: American League
The Race Is On
As August is winding down, the race for October is seen by many teams in Major League Baseball. The final month of Baseball is approaching soon. Teams are trying to add the final pieces to make that playoff run and earn a sport in the Fall Classic. From the beginning of the season till now, the playoff picture seems much different than last years. With young talent emerging above the usual veteran style of teams, this year’s playoff bound teams are not what many people expected. And as of today, the M.L.B. standings are a tight race in some divisions and while in other divisions some teams have a strong hold for completing the season on top.
American League Playoff Picture:
East: It has been a tight race for two big name teams in this division. The Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees have been trading off the number one and two spot for most of the season. Tampa Rays did look promising early on, but key injuries have held them back. And although the Toronto Blue Jays have a lot of fire power offense led by the slugging Jose Bautista, it isn’t enough to grad a lead in the A.L. East division. Adding two major key bats of Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez have helped boost the Red Sox’s lineup. Crawford, who got of f to a slow start, has helped add that speedy offense the Red Sox needed. And A Gone has been nothing but consistent through the whole season making himself a great candidate for the M.V.P. award. The Yankees have once again proven that with old age could be the formula needed to add another World Series to the Franchise of Winners. It is a close race and will probably come down to the very last week. Whichever team does not win the division will more than likely grab the wild card standings.
Central: I, like many other fans of professional baseball did not even expect the Cleveland Indians to be one of the teams to possibly win the American League Central. But young talent led by their outstanding short stop Asdrubal Cabrera, great young pitching and great defense, the Indians are for real this season. The Indians added pitching ace Ubaldo Jimenez to help make the final push in September. Though, the Indians have been hit with key injuries to stars like Grady Sizemore, Shin- Soo Choo, and Travis Hafner, the Indians have still made the race a close one. The Detroit Tigers have gotten hot in recent days taking over the led in the A.L. Central division. With dominant pitching, and bats starting to heat up, the Tigers are also one tough team that will make grabbing the lead a challenge. And for most of the season, the Chicago White Sox have been a team that has dabbled towards the bottom of the division is now tied with Cleveland for second place. And now, possibly adding baseball great Jim Thome, the White Sox look to be back in contention for the playoff run. When the season began, a lot of people predicted the Minnesota Twins to be this year’s Central leaders, but the stand towards the bottom with no hope of making a playoff run.
West: One team has a lot of fire power, one team has epic arms, and one team has Jered Weaver. The American League West division was one of the hardest divisions to pick in my opinion. The Texas Rangers were my pick. They have the bats, and some great pitching. But it is their young pitching talents of Derek Holland and Matt Harrison that have helped put Texas back to a dominating team. C.J. Wilson has been nothing but great this season, and new comer Alexi Ogando has been lights out. Many figured with the departure of Cliff Lee who helped contribute to the Rangers visit to the World Series last season; Texas was going to rely heavily on bat power. But it has been opposite for this team. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have been on the Rangers tail for most of the second half of the season. Jered Weaver is making a strong case for the A.L. Cy Young award and leading a determined Angel’s team to get to the playoffs. And although Oakland Athletics had the pitching, and even added some much needed offense, Oakland has thrown in the towel and will see what happens next year.
In the American League race for October, not one team will win their division with ease. With a little over a month left, teams will have to make each game count. This season has made for a great and competitive season of Major League Baseball.
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